Exhibition honours Irish soldiers from Great War
THERE is a Great War remembrance art exhibition opening in Mallow Library, Co Cork, today. This exhibition represents the culmination of just over six months of work for me.
The number of Irishmen who served in the British and Commonwealth forces in the Great War is uncertain, but the number is thought to be certainly in excess of 200,000 and may have been as high as 300,000 - a significant proportion of the adult male population of the time.
Sadly, their memory was neglected as a matter of policy in the Irish Republic for almost 90 years, but the shame lies not with the men who served, who fought and died in their thousands in the trenches of the Western Front, on the beaches and in the ravines of Gallipoli, or those who perished on the sea or in the air, but rather with the state and the people who chose to forget them.
Thankfully, this amnesia has begun to lift in recent times and events like this exhibition are now possible.
These men deserve our respect and remembrance, along with the English, Scottish, Welsh, Canadian, Australian, New Zealand, South African, Indian, and other Commonwealth soldiers.
If my exhibition goes any way towards furthering this, then I will have deemed it a success.
Mallow, Co Cork